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Differences In Competencies Between An Associate Degree And Baccalaureate Degree In Nursing

1004 words - 5 pages

Nelson Mandela once said, “Education is the most powerful weapon in changing the world” (Durando, 2013). It is an important influence on all health care provider. Learning is an experience needed to move forward in our day to day activities. More education brings more opportunity. The more educational experience you have, the more doors are open for you, just like many doors are open to nurses with a BSN, than nurses with a diploma or an associate degree.
An associate degree nurse is a nurse with three years nursing training which are usually offered at community/junior colleges. After graduating from the program the associate nurse is qualified to take the National Council Licensure Exam ...view middle of the document...

Through assessing, diagnosing, planning, implementing and evaluating, we can ascertain whether the designated goals are met. This Nursing Process has helped nurses to stand out within their health care profession. Studies have also found that nurses prepared at the baccalaureate level have stronger communication and problem solving skills (Johnson, 1988) and a higher proficiency in their ability to make nursing diagnoses and evaluate nursing interventions (Giger & Davidhizar, 1990). A real life situation which adheres to the usefulness of a baccalaureate degree in decision making was one that took place in a nursing home where I worked as a PRN. A nurse with an associate degree received a critical lab result of a patient with blood glucose level of 250. Seeing this, she calls the nurse practitioner, with hopes of receiving an order for anti-hyperglycemic medication. She then notifies her supervisor who has a baccalaureate degree, but to her surprise, her supervisor advised her to perform a finger-stick test on the patient. The result for the test was 120, and further knowledge received from the patient revealed that she had consumed about 960ml of orange juice prior to the blood test. This is one of many occasions where decision making can be affected, depending on a particular nurse’s degree.
As education increases, salaries steadily follow suit. Without the baccalaureate degree, a nurse may not have the opportunity for career advancement. As a matter of fact, both baccalaureate and associate degree nurses practice the same job in a hospital set up. This leads to the inability of patients to differentiate between either kinds of nurses. Researches have shown that nursing education factors in patient safety and quality of care. In the year 2001, a certain research which shows the efficacy of nursing education in terms of care for patients was carried out by the Milbank Memorial Fund in the state of New York and Texas. These show significantly higher levels of medication errors and procedural violations are committed by nurses prepared at the associate degree and diploma levels...

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